Meet the country's most inspiring entrepreneurs...
We’re thrilled to reveal the latest nominees in our 50 Over 50 Awards, in association with JD Williams.
The Super Entrepreneurs category celebrates the women making millions from a single idea – and they’re all over 50!
The shortlist below is the latest of the ten categories to be revealed. We’ll be announcing the other shortlists both in the magazine and online over the coming months. You can see the full list here.
The overall winners of each category will be announced at a special event this autumn.
Until then, read on to discover more about the five women to make our Super Entrepreneurs shortlist…
Dragons’ Den reject turned dog bowl millionaire
Natalie invented the multi- award-winning Road Refresher bowl for her Miniature Pinscher to drink water on long journeys without it spilling.
A single mum who left school with no qualifications, she appeared on Dragons’ Den and was rejected – but went ahead with her idea anyway.
Now her company, Prestige Pets, sells in 42 countries – the Obamas even bought one when they were in office.
Natalie says: “Dragons’ Den told me I couldn’t take on the USA as it would eat me alive. I went there with Road Refresher and within nine months it had become the fastest-selling dog bowl
on amazon.com, plus it was stocked in walmart.com.
“My smartest move was bringing Road Refresher to market. I’ve patented it and brought out other new products I’ve also patented.
“Inventions are my passions. Midlife for me is a time to really reach my goals.”
Wedding cake maker to the stars
Rosalind started making beautifully decorated cupcakes for a weekend market stall, moving on
to elaborate wedding cakes in 2011.
Since then she’s been twice awarded Wedding Cake Maker of the Year for her spectacular creations, which include sugar castles for celeb weddings, Middle Eastern royal weddings and a giant gingerbread house for Harrods’ window.
As well as working with luxury retailers, she has a ready-to-order confection range. www.confectionbyrosalindmiller.com
Rosalind says: “I’ve always been a creative person – my background is in art and design – and i saw an opportunity to put my creativity into baking.
“We often do large overseas events, which can involve a huge cake sometimes three metres high – the logistics can be very challenging! Luckily, I have a very trusted business partner in my daughter, Yasmine.
“I changed my career and started my business when
I was in my late forties. Age has never concerned me or stopped me making a leap into doing something new.”
The fragrance guru
Jayne worked for 15 years at Molton Brown before launching her luxury fragrance company T-London.
She creates reed diffusers, room fragrances, candles and bath and body products that are sold to luxury hotels, private members’ clubs and online.
Jayne says: “I remember a trip to Mexico, sipping a cup of tea overlooking the turquoise waters, catching a hint of lime blossom in the air and thinking, ‘if only you could bottle this.’ That was when the seed of T-London was sown.
“I wanted to create fragrances blended to trigger memories of special moments that always seemed to happen when reflecting on the day with a cup of the local brew – this is why some of the collections are named after teas.”
The trucking genius
Pauline was stuck in traffic when she had a lightbulb moment: wondering why nobody used the space underneath trailers, she invented the SOMI trailer (same outside, more inside), which carries eight extra pallets and saves 150 tonnes of CO2 a year for every truck globally. Eventually, half a million trucks could be taken off the road.
Pauline, MD of SOMI Trailers, left school at 15, went to Cambridge University at 38, then did an MBA.
Pauline says: “I love that my job is so much fun and raises the profile of women in engineering. My proudest moment? Winning the UK Women in Innovation Award.
“Whatever happens, I’m going to enjoy life. I’ve survived leukaemia, raising kids and other chaos, so now I just smile and get on with it.”
The queen of snacks
Nimisha got her business idea for air-dried fruit and veg crisps when she owned a café across the road from a school and saw the constant battle between parents trying to persuade their children to have fruit as a snack while children bartered for crisps.
She founded Nim’s Crisps in 2012 and to launch her business she sold her house and bought a 10,000 sq ft factory. Tesco, Co-op and Ocado now stock her products and she has won awards for the air-drying innovation.
Nimisha says: “I left school at 15 with no experience of running a business. But I have an innate belief that anyone can do anything with the right mindset.
“My proudest moment was producing something no one else had made before. The icing on the cake was winning awards in the first year. Now I know I can do pretty much anything I want to.”